Before Darwin, Animal Mummies Were Used to Squash Early Evolutionary Theory : ScienceAlert

Throughout the early 1800s, the question of whether animals could turn into new species was hotly debated in scientific circles. In 1798, Napoleon Bonaparte brought a slew of savants — geologists, engineers, and other scientists – on his unsuccessful attempt to take over Egypt. A collection of mummified animals that the scholars brought back from … Read more

Half of migratory animal species are in decline – many face extinction

The wandering albatross (Diomedea exulans) is classed as vulnerable to extinction imageBROKER.com GmbH & Co. KG /Alamy Hundreds of migratory species – from humpback whales to wandering albatrosses – are under threat because of human activity, according to the first United Nations report on the animals. The State of the World’s Migratory Species report, released … Read more

Some animal cells contain tiny tornadoes that mix up their contents

Visualisation of fluid flow inside a fruit fly egg cell Lucy Reading-Ikkanda Fruit fly egg cells create miniature tornadoes in order to properly develop and function, and these tornadoes could be widespread in large cells of other species. The cells that make up all living things contain a fluid called the cytoplasm, which moves around … Read more

Turns Out There’s One Animal Powerful Enough to Mess With Lions’ Feeding Habits : ScienceAlert

In a stark example of how everything on our living planet is interconnected, one species of tiny, invasive insects has reduced lions’ abilities to feast on zebras. As we humans are causing so many different changes to our environment all at once, it’s not always easy to pin the consequence on the disturbance that produced … Read more

Bizarre Fossils Are Neither Plant Nor Animal, But a ‘Weird Fusion’ of Life : ScienceAlert

If you ever find yourself playing a game of twenty questions, there’s a little-known life form you can pick that is sure to leave your opponent stumped. It is neither animal, vegetable, nor mineral. It’s not even a bacterium or fungi. It’s called a Euglenid – and it’s a weird fusion of a bunch of … Read more

Multiple sclerosis genes may have arisen to ward off animal infections

Multiple sclerosis is an autoimmune condition that occurs when the immune system starts attacking nerves KATERYNA KON/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY The largest genetic database of ancient humans yet is shedding new light on some modern medical conditions, such as multiple sclerosis (MS), as well as why there is variation among people when it comes to other … Read more

What’s Missing from the Emoji Animal Kingdom?

Ecologists and biologists commonly conduct surveys of the plants, fungi and animals in the environment they study. It’s less common, however, for that environment to be the virtual emojisphere. Emoji, the cutesy digital characters that have become their own mode of communication in text messages and online, are chock-full of representations of the natural world. … Read more